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HomeIllinois NewsPublic letter from IL GOP precinct committeeman to Governor's Chief of Staff

Public letter from IL GOP precinct committeeman to Governor’s Chief of Staff




LIBERTYVILLE – A precinct committeeman from the northern suburbs has concerns about the future of the state of Illinois and the Illinois Republican Party, and has tried to get the message to the governor's office. He hopes a public letter will draw the governor's attention to crucial issues at hand:

From: Grant D. Noble, Republican Precinct Committeeman, Libertyville 201

To: Governor's Chief of Staff Rich Goldberg 

Dear Chief of Staff Goldberg,

Last year I wrote Governor Rauner but it was returned unanswered as “too political”. So I'm hoping you will consider the following as you advise the Governor. Last year I worked in battleground State Rep districts in several counties. I'm delighted the Governor can now sustain his vetoes without a single Democrat vote. But that was the only bright spot in a bad year for Illinois Republicans.

Illinois Republicans gained 3.38% in the state legislature but that compares to Republican gains of 12% in the Iowa Senate, 18% in the Kentucky House and 9% in the Minnesota Senate. In the Illinois Comptroller race, where the contrast couldn't be more favorable for Republicans, Leslie Munger lost by 5% to Susan Mendoza—the opposite result of the 2014 Governor's race. After tens of millions spent to help Republicans, raised in large part due to Governor Rauner's generosity, this has to be disappointing.

To some extent, this was the result of the new same day registration law that enabled Democrats to overwhelm election day officials with “voters“ who are often illegal. It is also due to people leaving our state, most of which would be inclined to vote Republican. The Census Bureau says that in just one year from July 2015 to July 2016, 114,144 left Illinois. It is safe to say that most of Governor Rauner's margin of victory of 142,284 will have moved by the time we get to November 2018.

So even if opinion polls showing the Governor running below 40% approval are exaggerated and, unlike 2016, a big spending blitz can bring back everyone who voted for the Governor in 2014, he'd still end up losing because the Republican base has shrunk while the Democrat base has increased.

Bruce Rauner has nothing to lose by changing tactics that have not worked well the last two years.

The first thing Governor Rauner must recognize is that he, along with many other Illinois Republicans, made a major mistake in not supporting Donald Trump. Many Republicans, like myself, had severe problems with President Trump, but decided to support him because the alternative was unthinkable and Trump had shown, by repeated promises and by selecting Vice-President Pence, that he might nominate a Neal Gorsuch to the Supreme Court, the biggest issue in last year's election.

Those that backed Trump, like Wisconsin's Ron Johnson, did surprisingly well. Those who did not, like Mark Kirk, Kelly Ayotte and Joe Heck, underperformed badly. Governor Bevin went from 33% (Rauner is at 34% in Morning Consult polling) to 45% approval with a 18% Republican increase in the Kentucky House—largely due to Trump being strongly backed by every major Kentucky Republican..

The 2016 Detroit recount showed 37% of precincts with too many votes—Pence's voting commission is badly needed. Illegal aliens, felons, the dead, double voting, the mentality incompetent in nursing homes—the usual Democrat vote fraud will be enhanced with same day registration. Ending Chicago's and other Illinois municipalities' “Sanctuary City” policy would do more to reelect Bruce Rauner than all the ads he could buy. Trump's plans for inner city schools, jobs and crime should also be embraced.

Governor Rauner must also understand he can not “compromise” with legislative leaders that want the same tax and spend policies that defeated his 2014 opponent. He should instead be inspired by Governor Walker who, like Trump, never backed down despite ferocious opposition. Both proved media bias and union money can be beat using the Internet and grass roots organizing.

The Illinois Policy Institute has a great plan on how this state can meet all its obligations and balance the budget without raising taxes. https://www.illinoispolicy.org/reports/budget-solutions-2018-balancing-the-state-budget-without-tax-hikes/ I would also add more asset sales (like the Tollway) to the Governor's proposal to sell the Thompson Center. These sales should fund final lump sum payments for pension obligations, saving the state billions and getting more votes from relieved state workers.

Like the Governor, I support term limits and saving 200 million reforming Workers' Compensation. But these are minor issues that don't shift many votes. If Rauner takes on the special interests as the Illinois Policy Institute proposes, they will howl. But by using the communication tactics of Walker and Trump, the average voter will understand most of the pain will hit only a privileged few. I hate to say it, but Trump's post convention speeches were far more specific and inspiring than anything I've heard in 4 years of speech making by the Governor. Others have noticed this, too, such as an Illinois Review article entitled: “RAUNER DELIVERS ANOTHER "RINSE AND REPEAT" BUDGET ADDRESS”

Finally, the governor must understand he has an enormous problem with religious conservatives. As State Representative Terri Bryant explained at the 2016 Peoria Convention (where 90% of the delegates opposed adding gay marriage to our party's platform), it's the Republican platform on religious freedom that causes many to vote Republican instead of Democrat to appease union bosses and neighbors. Trump won by defending religious freedom, but on this issue, Bruce Rauner has a tin ear.

SB1564 requires every doctor, pharmacist and pro-life pregnancy center in the state to help a woman obtain an abortion whenever asked. The Governor signed this bill despite its passage without a single Republican vote and after thousands called and begged him to veto it. Now Rauner faces the probable passage of HB40, which mandates unlimited taxpayer funding for abortion on demand. The last thing Illinois needs is to spend tens of millions it doesn't have on more abortions. If the Governor signs this bill and alienates both social and fiscal conservatives, his reelection chances become virtually nil.

Jim Walder owns Timber Creek Bed & Breakfast in Paxton. He was fined more than $80,000 by Illinois Human Rights Commission appointees of Governor Rauner for politely refusing to host a reception for a gay civil union ceremony. Conservative churches feel their “businesses” like schools and organizations are next on the IHRC hit list. No wonder all three Republican state representatives who voted for Gay Marriage in 2013 are out of politics after near defeats in the primary.

Our party depends on a coalition of fiscal and religious conservative plus what use to be called Reagan Democrats who are now Trump Democrats. If Governor Rauner gives in to the Illinois Senate leaders' big tax increases, he'll have alienated all three parts of our winning coalition. The Governor must rethink how to sell fiscal conservatism and take steps to bring back the other two parts of our party. If a very flawed Donald Trump could do that, there's certainly time for Bruce Rauner to do the same.

Most Sincerely,

Grant D. Noble, Republican Precinct Committeeman, Libertyville 201


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  1. The Democrats, under Madigan, are stalling for time until the next election.
    They believe they can drag things out long enough to toss Rauner out of office in the next election.
    Unfortunately, Bruce’s refusal to listen to reason may make the Democrats’ plan become a reality.

  2. Hi Grant —
    Any thoughts on why your precinct went from Mitt Romney getting 58% of the vote to Trump only getting 44%? That’s a mighty big swing towards the Dems. Seems like Trump is the opposite of a winning strategy in the suburbs.
    Or all of Libertyville Township going from Romney winning with 52% of the vote to Trump getting demolished with 37%?

  3. I know Grant, and think that’s a very good letter. I hope that Gov. Rauner will veto any budget that includes an income tax rate increase. He should also veto a bill that gives money for abortions. I emailed Gov. Rauner and asked him to veto the bill that would establish more sanctuary places for illegal aliens.

  4. **No wonder all three Republican state representatives who voted for Gay Marriage in 2013 are out of politics after near defeats in the primary.**
    What “near defeats” did Tom Cross and Ed Sullivan have in a primary?

  5. I see the Republican Establishment apologists are out in force, nitpicking my points. Both Cross and Sullivan had gobs of money against token candidates and they still got under 60% in the primary—no wonder they both are out of politics today. Gay Marriage killed them.
    Illinois stuck out like a sore thumb in a sea of 2016 Midwest Republican victories. I spent all my time campaigning in swing state rep districts because I knew nobody in my area had a chance thanks to virtually the entire Illinois Republican leadership attacking Trump, not defending him like Scott Walker did.
    I opposed Trump in the primary because I thought his track record was too liberal. But I changed my mind when I saw the platform, Pence and the repeated, detailed promises made by Trump. Today we know Trump delivered on his promises, so why can’t Rauner just admit he was wrong? Could it be Rauner is really for illegal amnesty, big federal spending and tax funded abortion?
    I opposed Rauner in the primary for the same reasons I opposed Trump—the track record was liberal. While I am happy he has vetoed most of the bad bills (except SB1564), I am very unhappy he has not directly attacked the recent “compromise” budget of the Illinois Senate Leaders, which is long on taxes and short on long term spending cuts. At this point, I don’t see Rauner winning. But maybe, like the last 4 months of the 2016 presidential race, we can see a turnaround and get another political miracle in 2018.

  6. Hi Old Lake County, can you explain how Mark Kirk LOST DuPage and Lake Counties? It looks like you don’t know what you’re talking about. Donald Trump did, however, sweep in plenty of downstate victories. Big coattails. First Republican Madison County board chairman since Hoover, Republican county board majority. Legislative seats. Mark Kirk had zero coattails.

  7. The sooner Rauner is gone and IL is back in Democratic hands the better off the Republican party will be. Rauner lacks the testicular fortitude, intelligence, drive, and innate ability to take on Madigan. All Rauner is doing is allowing Madigan to hang the failure of IL on the Republican party’s neck.

  8. The Illinois GOP has the bad habit of wasting money on campaigns in state and federal representative districts with over 70 percent Democrat voting histories.
    Wasting contributed money on hopeless cases and worthless candidates doesn’t win elections.
    Some of those worthless candidates are losers who the Party owes favors to, which is their only “qualification” for the ballot.
    Pick good candidates and run them in districts
    where Democrats hold a less than 10 percent lead, concentrate GOP efforts in those areas, and MAYBE we can get a majority in Springfield.

  9. Has hasn’t raised taxes, yet. If he just didn’t do that, ran on it, and got reelcted then that would be great for the Illinois Republican Party. Assuming that he also didn’t raise taxes for 4 years. The people sweating are the people who WANT our tax money. The taxpayers are sitting just fine. Besides, this makes it harder for Democrats to justify NOT reforming.
    If Rauner raises taxes, then we’re doomed, Democrats will never reform anything, and in 5 years they’ll need another tax increase. At that point I’ll pull my support. But not yet.

  10. Here is my point, mathematically IL is doomed die to pension and healthcare liabilities. You need to realize even the adjusted rate of return assumptions are not actuarially sound. It really is simple to understand, the annual inflation adjustment on those drawing pension is greater than the expected real rate of return on the investment portfolio (source John Bogle 4% nominal on stocks 2.6 nominal bonds).
    So the question to ask is what is good for the national Republican party, to have IL sink under Democratic rule or Republican rule. The answer is: Democratic rule.
    Illinois is doomed no matter what. The question becomes what can the Republican party leverage out of it. Nationally the party can bolster itself by letting IL cede to full Democratic control and crumble under their watch.
    And as a resident I do not want the sate saved. I do not want teachers, municipal employees, state workers to collect even a fraction of their bloated promised pension and healthcare benefits. What they expect to receive is unconscionable

  11. Not sure what Mark Kirk has to do with this, but sure, I’ll address your argument to show how wrong you are!
    Mark Kirk lost his race by way less than Trump lost Illinois, so it makes more sense to argue that Trump rode his coattails. Kirk lost Lake county by 5. The Amazing Donald lost by 19. Sad!

  12. I could care less about margins. One race had significant third and fourth party strength, the other not really much third party support at all. Kirk still couldn’t even win Lake County or DuPage County or Illinois, not even close. Trump had major coattails in the forgotten part of this state. What’s sad is Bruce raising taxes. Lots of Trump voters will opt to not vote for a Democrat or a Democrat at all.

  13. You have a point. Illinois could lose as many as three electoral votes after the next reapportionment, especially if Trump gets a lot of aliens out of here. That would be great news. By 2032 Illinois could be under 15 electoral votes or even 14. Like, WOW!

  14. The Republican Party might read it, but most likely will ignore it. They’re SMARTER than any of us, correct? That’s why they LOSE.
    As long as so many of them circle around the Party like flies looking for what they can get, or are collecting paychecks for doing little or nothing like bloodsucking fleas, the Party, as an entity, will pay no attention to good sense.
    Good sense might cost them their “prestige” and paychecks!
    And try to get through a hundred of these self-interested go-betweens to get to Rauner, even if Bruce WOULD be “willing to listen.”